28 May 2024 11:02

Russia's grain exports are already over 10 million tonnes higher than last season at this time - Union of Grain Exporters

MOSCOW. May 28 (Interfax) - Russian grain exports have topped 60 million tonnes since the beginning of the agricultural year (from July 1, 2023), and are over 10 million tonnes higher than the same period of the last agricultural year, Eduard Zernin, Chairman of the Board of the Union of Grain Exporters, said in an interview with Interfax.

"Exports this season have already crossed the 60 million-tonne mark. No one has any doubts that these are record exports. We are ahead by over 10 million tonnes compared to the previous season for grain, and this includes 5 million more tonnes of wheat," he said.

Feed crops, namely barley and corn, added another 5 million tonnes to exports, which, was a significant breakthrough for the current 2023/24 agricultural season, he said.

"We are diversifying not just our sales markets, but also the range of agricultural products we supply, accustoming the world market to the idea that Russia is not only the world leader in wheat exports, but also a reliable supplier of other grains and legumes," he said.

Russian grain exporters did not confine themselves to traditional sales markets, but began to actively enter new ones, Zernin said. "As a result, the share of the Middle East and North Africa in our shipments decreased from 80% to 65%, while the shares of new markets in Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America increased significantly. We rediscovered the market of Indonesia, developed Morocco and Eritrea, and seriously increased feed crop shipments to China," he said.

The departure of global grain traders from the Russian market a year ago opened a window of new opportunities for Russian companies and domestic grain, and stimulated the activity of Russian exporters in the world market, he said.

"It's not for nothing that we have been closely engaged in so-called grain diplomacy and the development of direct relations with buyers these last two years. Most international tenders, with the exception of the Egyptian GASC, are held with an arbitrary choice of country of origin. And if previously a transnational player, winning a tender, could change the country of origin of wheat at any time, for example from Russia to France, then in the new situation a Russian exporter, winning a similar tender, was guaranteed to supply wheat of Russian origin," he said. Because of this, Russia was able to set new grain export records.